Yet another example of social media trumping traditional media (in both speed & accuracy) for the distribution of breaking news:

[Citizen Journalists Provided Glimpses of Mumbai Attacks via NYTimes]
At the peak of the violence, more than one message per second with the word “Mumbai” in it was being posted onto Twitter, a short-message service that has evolved from an oddity to a full-fledged news platform in just two years.

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Some news on the microblogging front:

[How Much Is Twitter Worth to Facebook? via NYTimes BITS]
Yahoo’s decision to pass on Facebook wasn’t quite as disastrous as its decision not to buy Google early in that company’s history. On the flip side, Yahoo, like lots of other Internet companies, has certainly done its share of dumb deals, like buying Geocities and Broadcast.com. Picking out a Google from a Geocities is more art than science. Now Facebook is presumably looking at Twitter much the same way — as a company with no revenue that nonetheless could be important. Twitter is surfing a growing wave of user behavior and engagement that is related to, but not the same as, how people use social networks, blogs, cellphones and other tools of self-expression. The wave may crest and Twitter may stumble. Then again, Facebook could find that Twitter by itself, or as part of a bigger company, could help shape a rival community of social sharing.

[Why Twitter Turned Down Facebook via NYTimes BITS]
Serious talks between the Facebook social network and the Twitter microblogging service started soon after Mr. Williams took over as chief executive on Oct. 16. Twitter reportedly rejected Facebook’s $500 million, mostly stock offer several weeks ago.

[Popularity or Income? Two Sites Fight It Out via NYTimes]
Twitter, a start-up company in San Francisco that has become a household name, is the leading microblogging outfit. At least three million people have tried its free service, according to TwitDir, a directory service. But Twitter has absolutely no revenue — not even ads. Yammer, a new and much smaller copycat aimed at corporate customers, has a mere 60,000 users. Unlike Twitter, its founders set out from the beginning to charge for its service. Just six weeks after its public debut, Yammer is already bringing in a modest amount of cash.

[Will Microblogging at Work Make You More Productive? via NYTimes BITS]
The central question on Twitter, “What are you doing?” is transformed on Yammer to, “What are you working on?” There are other features specific to the office. Unlike Twitter, which limits users to 140 characters, Yammer’s users can type as much as they want and reply to specific messages. They can attach photos, documents or videos.

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Social media networks are so nifty. For Twitter, choosing growth over revenue seems like a terrible idea during an economic recession — that company makes no profit! Yammer, AKA Twitter for businesses, was wise to set up a business model that charges for their services; it has real potential to increase productivity in the workplace.

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